Irvington Alumni Teachers: Justin Choi

Hi, my name’s Mr. Choi and I’m teaching AP Chemistry and Honors Chemistry this year. I went to Irvington and graduated in 2014. One of my fondest memories from Irvington was joining the badminton team, because that’s where I had the most fun and met the most people. I wanted to be a teacher because I started off coaching the badminton team after I graduated. I thought, this coaching thing’s pretty fun, and interacting with students is really fun. So I said, maybe I can make teaching a career for me. As a Chem major, I think the only other option is for me to go into research, but I like teaching more; it’s way more fun than staying in a lab all day.

Everything in chemistry feels like a puzzle.It’s really fun for me, where every problem is a new puzzle for me to solve. My favorite teacher would be Mr. Lee, right next door, because I feel like he’s a really good teacher, and I think I learned the most from his class when I was a student here.

I think the most glaring difference between students in my time and students now, is that significantly more people are worried about college, SAT prep, and all that stuff. The amount of people actually worried about that now is way higher. As a result, people are having a lot less fun. I feel that they should be enjoying high school more than a lot of our students are right now. Some people in honors and AP Classes when I went to Irvington worried about college, but definitely not as much as students do now.

If I would change anything about Irvington, I think this might be a little biased, but I feel like Irvington back then was healthier than it is now. There wasn’t as much stress from the SAT, ACT and college applications, as there is now, too. I would change that, and reduce the stress from what it’s at right now.

I think school spirit’s also definitely decreased through the years. We had rallies when I went to Irvington, and it wasn’t as packed, so everyone could fit in one, and we wouldn’t have to split them up. However, now, a lot of people might want to be studying rather than doing spirit weeks, and rallies and things like that.